Depending on whom you talk to, Donald Sutherland is known primarily as (a) the hilarious comedy star of “MASH” and “National Lampoon’s Animal House”; (b) the creepy leading man of “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and “Don’t Look Now”; or (c) Kiefer Sutherland’s dad.
Born and raised in Canada, the actor studied at Victoria College in Toronto where he met his first wife, Lois Hardwick, and graduated with a double major in drama and engineering. He subsequently moved to England, where he pursued an acting career by studying at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. During his time in England, Sutherland appeared in several BBC television productions, including “The Saint” and “The Avengers.”
Sutherland used a clip of his appearance on “The Saint” to land a role in his first major American film, “The Dirty Dozen,” in 1967. He followed that up with “MASH” and “Kelly’s Heroes” in 1970.
Sutherland’s first marriage ended in 1966 and that same year he married Canadian actress Shirley Douglas, who gave birth to twins Rachel and Kiefer. Sutherland’s marriage to Douglas ended in 1970.
The actor had a short-lived romance with Jane Fonda after making “Klute” with her in 1971, and ultimately married his third wife, French-Canadian actress Francine Racette, in 1972. They are still together and have three children.
After being a leading man through most of the 1970s, Sutherland began alternating between leading roles in films such as “A Dry White Season” and “Ordinary People,” with supporting and character roles in films such as “JFK” and “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”
Sutherland appeared in “A Time to Kill,” as did Kiefer, however the father and son did not share any scenes together.
He has won two Golden Globe awards, both for television movies: 2002’s “Path to War” and 1995’s “Citizen X.”
Politically active since the 1960s, Sutherland occasionally contributes blog posts to the Huffington Post.